Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent
to discipline him.(Proverbs 13:24 ESV)
This biblical paradox has challenged parents and teachers who are confronted with crucial issues on how to discipline a child without provoking him to anger which would eventually result in rebellion. Furthermore, children are also confused as to whether their parents' and teachers' methods of discipline are expressions of love or frustrations.
Basic questions such as "Should I spank my child for misbehaving? Should I just talk to him about his misdemeanor and reward him for good behavior?" The development of psychology has offered a wide range of approaches to discipline; each promising beneficial result. The latest trend in child psychology recommends parents and teachers to praise children for good behavior and instill in them positive image of themselves leaving out punishment which is considered to be harsh and dangerous form of discipline. "Find one good point of your child and praise him for it," recommends a nouveau child psychology book. However, little do parents and teachers know that these methods will result in frustrations among children who do not perform well, and lack of personal motivation and genuine discipline. Eventually, children will have poor self-image and reward-seeking behavior.
While parents and teachers desire healthy image and good behavior among their children, the Bible clearly points out "sparing the rod means hating one's child." The "rod" should not be mistaken for "corporal punishment" for the Bible warns parents that they should never abuse the power and authority they have over their children while they are young because it provokes the children to anger. (Ephesians 6:4). How should a person of authority use a "rod" to discipline children? This may be in a form of a task as "consequence" for misbehaving. Children may not like it at first which often results in defiant behavior; however, giving children due explanation and by being "diligent to discipline" children will eventually understand it.
"For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. (Hebrews 12:11 ESV). Discipline must always be done in love, never as a vent to parents' and teachers' frustration. God instructs parents and teachers to love their children the way He loves His children. The Bible tells us that God disciplines those whom He loves to perfect their righteousness. When parents and teachers trust God's methods of discipline over their children, they will see the fruit of godly character which is a blessing for their children and for themselves.
It is within this premise of godly discipline that Sekolah Bukit Sion aims to promote in its educational principle
"train up a child in the way
he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it." (Proverbs 22:6 NKJV)